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    Mint State Triple Unite

    Charles I (1625-1649) gold Triple Unite 1642 MS61 NGC, Oxford mint, Plume mm, S-2724, N-2381. 27.02gm. Obv. CAROLVS : D : G : MAG : BRIT : FRAN : ET : HI : REX, bust of Charles facing left holding sword and olive branch, plume behind. Rev. EXVRGAT : DEVS : DISSIPENTVR : INIMICI :, around RELIG : PROT | LEG : ANG | LIBER : PAR in three lines as central device; three plumes above, date (1642) below. Arguably one of the most iconic denominations in the entire British numismatic series: the Triple Unite, the largest hammered gold coin to ever be produced in England and a piece of British civil war propaganda which continues to inspire awe even 377 years on.

    Prior to the civil war, Charles's coinage was almost uniformly poorly-struck, irregular-flanned and as crude as the contemporary Spanish 'pieces of eight'. Certainly, some experiments into milled coinage were being undertaken by Nicholas Briot, but in general Charles's coinage represents a very weak era for the output of the Royal Mint. However - this all changed once Charles left London and hostilities gradually began to take shape. Whilst numerous cities and towns began to declare their loyalty for either Royalists or Parliament, both sides proceeded to mint their own coins so as not to lose grasp of circulating currency and thus risk a breakdown of order. Indeed, coinage underpinned civilisation to such an extent that even besieged castles and strongholds resorted to creating their own coins from salvaged plate silver. Parliament's coins were largely similar to the pre-existing regal issue, crudely struck and irregular. Charles, meanwhile, decided that coins were a perfect means of spreading his message and demonstrating his value - and thus he went on to produce exceptionally fine, large-sized pieces of gold and silver bearing his 'Wellington Declaration', stating to his people and Parliament that despite all appearances he upheld "the Protestant religion, the laws of England and the Liberty of Parliament".

    Of all his 'Declaration' coins, none are so impressive nor celebrated as the Triple Unite represented here in incredible Mint State. Every aspect of this coin from its imagery to its production shows an effort to convey dominance and inspire admiration. Charles is depicted in crown and full armour holding a sword in his right hand and an olive branch in his left; clearly he is conveying the message that he holds both war and peace in his hands. The planchet is perfectly round, textured with die polish lines and colored the richest butter-yellow, and has received the strike wonderfully well with razor-sharp detail and only minor doubling on the reverse. Minor planchet flaws are noted in the obverse field, but there really is nothing about this coin which detracts from its intended, staggering visual effect. Only one other of this type has been certified higher by NGC, with none certified as Mint State by PCGS; we sold an AU53 graded piece with the same obverse die as this in our January 2018 NYINC sale for $132,000, and quite honestly we have no doubt that this majestic offering will inspire similar fervour amongst serious collectors of British coinage. A numismatic masterpiece.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    April, 2019
    25th-29th Thursday-Monday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 14
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
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